I wanted to explain a little about the different rep schemes you guys see for the weightlifting portion of class. My reasons or goals for using a certain rep scheme is not necessarily why another person would write the same numbers, so this isn’t gospel. This is just an explanation of what I am looking for during a particular workout.
A. 1RM: one rep max. you are looking for the heaviest weight you can move for 1 rep that day. May or may not be a PR for you, but if it’s the heaviest weight you are capable of that day. One rep maxes are very taxing on your body which is why we plan them out by quite a few weeks. This is where your form will start to fail and you must be smart about if that 1 or 2 extra kilos is worth the loss in form and potential for injury. Trust me I have gone for many a PR knowing my form was failing, however I have lifted long enough to know how much I can take generally. That’s not to say on a few of those attempts I didn’t walk away thinking “I should have saved that for another day, I need some ice STAT.” Be ambitious, not greedy. That’s one of my favorite quotes from Rippetoe.
B. 3RM or 5RM: these are also the heaviest weight you can move for 3 or 5 reps. These can be a lot harder than a 1RM mentally and physically. You can definitely building strength and mental fortitude here.
C. 5×3 or 3×3 70-75%: you are NOT looking for a heaviest weight, you are working at a particular weight for all the sets. My goal is for you to gain strength and consistency at heavier weights. Foundation building is how I think of these sets and reps.
D. 5×3, 5×2, etc at moderate weights or increasing within good form. This is usually what I write for an exercise we have no maxes in or never will have a max in and I simply want you to get better at the movement while putting your body under some strain.
E. 10×3 50-60% with little rest and focus on speed. This is the same weight for all sets and the point is SPEED in the concentric portion of the movement. I don’t want to get too technical, but it’s what you think of as the exertion portion of the lift (ex:standing up from a squat, pulling the deadlift from the floor, pushing up on a shoulder press). These weights should be lighter and allow for great speed on this portion of the lift. That doesn’t mean you dive into a squat or lower a bar with gusto onto your chest. The eccentric portion of the lift should be in control and at a slower pace. The coaches can help you understand this one, it is definitely the most misunderstood. Doing this properly will help you with your power and strength. When I write percentages like 50-60%, I do this because there is no exact number, so if 50% seems too light for the goal of the workout but 60% seems to heavy, then you can go with 57.5%. A lot of this is learning what works for your particular body.Re